Mytchall Bransgrove / Stuff
Frank Russell Walmsley outside Timaru High Court in 2016. (File photo)
A woman who was raped when she was 14 by her carer says he is a ‘predator’ and ‘an animal’ who took her youth and her life.
Frank Russell Walmsey, 63, a former carer for children and young people, appeared in Christchurch High Court on Thursday where he was convicted of rape and indecent assault on a girl in his care nearly 30 years.
The offense occurred in 1995 in Oamaru. At the time, Walmsley and his wife were licensed child, youth and family carers, now known as Oranga Tamariki.
Judge Gerald Nation said the woman was likely the first victim of Walmsley’s sex crimes.
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Walmsley was sentenced to 22 years in prison in 2016 after being found guilty of 52 counts of child sexual abuse, some of which were in his custody. His sentence was later reduced to 19 years on appeal.
The offense for which Walmsley was convicted on Thursday came to light in 2018 when police questioned the victim about her foster care experience.
During a trial earlier this year, a jury heard the sexual abuse happened in the home’s bathroom and in the victim’s bedroom. The victim said that during the abuse she cried, told Walmsley what he was doing was painful and asked him to stop, but he ignored her pleas.
He told the girl that if she told anyone about the abuse she would not be believed because he was a licensed caregiver and she was a child who had been placed in his custody due to her ” bad behaviour “.
The jury found Walmsley guilty of three counts of sexual assault by unlawful intercourse, two counts of rape and five counts of indecent assault against a girl between the ages of 12 and 16.
In her impact statement, the victim described how the abuse impacted her throughout her life as she ‘went off the rails’ and turned to alcohol and other anti-social behavior in order to cope with the trauma. She described feeling hopeless, angry, scared and helpless.
“The hardest part is not being believed. For many years and no matter who I told, I felt that I was not believed. [and] considered a liar,” she said.
“Frank is a predator that disgusts me. He’s an animal that took advantage of me. He took my youth and took my whole life.
The court heard despite Walmsley’s convictions, he continued to maintain his innocence.
Crown prosecutor Shawn McManus requested that an additional two years be added to the sentence Walmsley was already serving to acknowledge the offense against another victim.
Walmsley’s attorney, Anselm Williams, said he did not believe additional jail time should be added to Walmsley’s sentence since the latest convictions had “added nothing to the overall position”.
Justice Nation disagreed, saying if the latest convictions had been part of Walmsley’s 2016 sentencing, he would have faced a higher starting point for his sentence.
“I consider a marked feature of your offense to be your arrogance. You treated a vulnerable and troubled young teenager who was in your custody as someone you had the right to use for repeated acts of sexual gratification, as if you would never be held accountable for what you did,” said the judge.
Judge Nation sentenced Walmsley to 14 years and 11 months in prison for the latest charges. This sentence will run concurrently with the sentence Walmsley is currently serving, which effectively means he would be serving a total sentence of 21 years for all of his offenses – two years longer than his current sentence.